To celebrate International Nurses’ Day, we spoke to some of the fantastic nurses who work on our cases to find out more about them and the important work they do.
- What made you want to be a nurse (why)?
- What is/are your area/s of expertise?
- What role have you found the most rewarding?
- Do you currently do any hands-on? If so, what?
- How do you use your nursing expertise and experience to benefit Fletchers clients?
Debbie Moss, Head of MLPS:
- I have wanted to be a nurse since I was about 5. I have never wanted to be anything else.
- I have a mixed background of experience but predominantly in Offender Health, Dementia and Nurse Prescribing.
- From a patient improvement point of view, I found offender health very rewarding as this was an area of healthcare that had the least previous uptake. From a heartstrings point of view, it has to be managing a large dementia home. I loved every minute of the challenges that brought and the rewards emotionally were amazing.
- I currently work 1 day a week for a nurse bank with the NHS focusing on vaccinations.
- I feel Fletchers benefits by having the in-house skills of nurses with a wide variety of experience. This enables us to review and assess clinical care based against local and national expected standards and our own personal experience. This compliments the work of the legal teams.
Elaine Wright, Nurse Analyst:
- Becoming a nurse is something that I always wanted to do. To be with someone and be their advocate when they are at their most vulnerable is priceless.
- My area of expertise is general medicine care of the elderly and also end of life care.
- Probably end of life nursing. To be with a patient at the last stages of their life, often when they have no one and no relatives are present.
- I work on my old ward most weekends and bank holidays on a supported discharge ward.
- I use my hands-on experience and knowledge gained during cases and advise what should/could have been done to assist clients in their claims.
Tracey Jacques, Nurse – Midwifery; Neonatal:
- It was my own experience of pregnancy and childbirth which made me look into a career in midwifery. I loved all aspects of the role, from education, antenatal care, preparation for parenthood, labour and care of the woman and her baby in the early postnatal period, I loved it all! I was already a qualified Nursery Nurse so had some experience of working with children from 6 weeks of age; midwifery bridged the gap between conception and 6 weeks.
- Midwifery – I had a 6-week gynae placement early on in my training to learn basic anatomy of the female reproductive system which has come in handy in my current role at Fletchers.
- All aspects of midwifery are rewarding, but the highlight is obviously providing care to the woman and her family in labour. Handing that new-born to a woman still makes the hairs on the back of my neck stand on end! Without a doubt, the downside to being a Midwife is having to care for women whose babies have died in utero, especially a term pregnancy. The word ‘Midwife’ actually means ‘with woman’ and in this situation our role has never been so significant. You usually find that it is these women and their families who are the most grateful for the care and compassion shown to them at the most awful times of their lives.
- I am still registered as a midwife and I am on the bank at the trust where I used to work, but I haven’t worked a clinical shift in around 2 years now.
- My own knowledge and clinical experience is what I use in my present role, however, I keep in touch with new practices and research by reading appropriate literature. I am still a member of the Royal College of Midwives (RCM) and receive monthly journals which publish interesting articles and advancements in care.
Jennifer McAdam, Nurse – Diagnostic Theatre; General Surgery:
- I kind of drifted into nursing as the careers adviser advised a pre nursing course at college combined with GCSEs after I failed everything at school!
- My experience has mainly been with hepato-biliary nursing and surgery on the ward and in theatre. I love anything to do with the liver, pancreas, stomach and small bowel!! My last area of work was in interventional radiology which is probably the future of medicine as more and more procedures are done through tiny incisions in the body and areas within the body are reached via minute catheters and wires and keyhole-like procedures. This is how a lot of cancer treatments are being done nowadays and it is fantastic.
- My favourite thing as a nurse was always just being with the patients, helping them to do their hair or just spending ages chatting to them. Unfortunately, there is just no time do this as wards become more stretched and short-staffed and it’s so sad to see. The patients always remember the nurses who held their hand or made them a cup of tea and a round of toast in the middle of the night.
- The cases I see at Fletchers are so varied and interesting. I can see from my own hospital experience how failures in care have happened. I have met some wonderful people in the NHS but unfortunately there are also a lot who just see it as a ‘job’ and you wondered why they came into the profession. I also have personal experience of being on the other side when my dad went to Accident and Emergency after a collapse. He had been in a lot of pain with a dental abscess and they just put it down to this and discharged him with painkillers. We took him back the day after, he had suffered a haemorrhagic stroke, and I’ll never forgive myself for not demanding they did a CT scan on him. So, I guess that’s one of the reasons I’m here now. I care a lot about people and to me I still feel I am helping a lot of people, like my dad, by getting answers and by holding people accountable for their actions to ensure that lessons are learnt and practice is questioned, challenged and changed for the benefit of everybody.
Emma Marchbank, Nurse – General Surgery; Offender Health; Nursing Homes:
- I became a nurse because my mum became ill and needed surgery to remove her thyroid. She was in hospital for over 2 weeks due to complications and the nursing staff were just wonderful and always busy, run off their feet. I actually got a work experience place on the ward my mum had her surgery and this helped me to progress to get a job in the hospital I wanted.
- My areas of expertise are surgery (bowel, bladder, gastrointestinal) where I got my first job, although this was a long time ago now. I learnt a lot from a very strict ward sister and she made me who I am today. Prison nursing was where I spent the next 6 years – very challenging and different environment to get used to. I then had my daughter and decided to move on. Most recently my last job before Fletchers was a dementia nursing home.
- I have been a nurse now for 16 years and have experienced very different areas of nursing. The area I found most challenging but also very rewarding would be the nursing home I worked in for 2 years prior to this position at Fletchers.I worked in a dementia care home which was very rewarding. Caring for people who had forgotten who they were, had challenging behaviours, some very young and some that just wanted to hold your hand. This job made me think about life in general and to live life for now.
- Not at present. I have an 8-year-old daughter who keeps me on my toes and I enjoy the Monday to Friday here at Fletchers.
- I use my skills to help solicitors find a breach of care and any causation issues. I then use my knowledge to paginate the records for them so that an expert can look at these to see if there is a breach of care. I can read the writing of most doctors and decipher charts and risk assessments.I support staff in full and date ranged paginations.I also complete Personal Injury paginations.The work I carry out gives a chronological order of events that happened.
Lucy Dean, Nurse – Dental; Maxillo-Facial:
- I am a people’s person. I love speaking to new people and meeting them, and with nursing I knew this would go a long way in caring for people. I knew this would help reassure and put them at ease when nervous and poorly.
- Maxillofacial Nursing and Dental Nursing.
- Not at the minute. But never say never.
- Putting the Patient/Client first always. Put yourself in their shoes. Have they received the best possible Care?